Traditional, formally broilled Coquilles St. Jacques

Somewhat tedious, but very elegant, good to ‘special ‘ occasions. Recipe may be prepared up to point (17) early in day, covered and chilled until just before serving.

For 6 hungry Canadians you should prepare

  • 50ml dry white wine
  • 3 tbsp. minced shallots (I zap them in the blender)
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 sprig parsley
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • Pinch of pepper
  • 700g bay scallops, washed
  • 250g mushrooms, wiped clean and minced (I zap them in the blender)
  • 400 ml. water
  • 2 tbsp. butter
  • 2 tbsp. flour
  • 150 ml heavy cream – or sour cream
  • 2 egg yolks, lightly beaten
  • 2 tsp. lemon juice
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • Pinch white pepper
  • 1 1/4 c. soft white bread crumbs
  • 80g  finely grated Gruyere cheese
  • 60ml melted butter
  1. In large saucepan simmer wine, shallots, bay leaf, parsley, salt and pepper uncovered for 5 minutes.
  2. Add scallops, mushrooms and enough water to cover.
  3. Cover and simmer 3 to 4 minutes, until scallops turn milky white.
  4. Drain, reserving cooking liquid.
  5. Set aside to cool.
  6. Return liquid, bay leaf and parsley to saucepan and boil rapidly, uncovered, until reduced to 180ml.
  7. Slice scallops across the grain .5cm thick –( I do it only when the scallops are really huge – otherwise use the small ones as they are).
  8. Melt butter in a small saucepan and blend in flour.
  9. Strain reduced cooking liquid and add along with cream.
  10. Heat, stirring constantly, until thickened and smooth.
  11. Spoon a little hot sauce into yolks, then return to pan.
  12. Set over lowest heat,  cook and stir for  1 minute. Do not allow to boil.
  13. Mix in lemon juice, salt and pepper.
  14. Pour over scallops and mushrooms and toss to mix.
  15. Spoon into 6 to 8 well buttered large scallop shells or au gratin dishes.
  16. Mix crumbs, cheese and butter and sprinkle evenly over each shell.
  17. Set on a large baking sheet.
  1. Preheat broiler.
  2. Broil 5 inches from heat 4 to 5 minutes until bubbly and dappled with brown. If chilled, set on lowest oven shelf, and let warm 5 to 6 minutes, then move up and broil 5 inches from heat 3 to 4 minutes until bubbly and brown.


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